Data + Design Project

The Village in Japan Where There are More Dolls than People

Friday 07.18.2014 , Posted by
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On the island of Shikoku, Japan lies the village of Nagoru – a place where life-size dolls outnumber people. It used to be an active community, but over the years many Nagoru locals moved to Osaka or Tokyo for jobs, and the village shrank to just a few dozen people. One of the locals that left was Ayano Tsukimi, but after years away she came back to the quaint place. In memory of her friends and family that lived there before, she began to make dolls based on their lives. [Read more...]

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A Selection From the 2014 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

Wednesday 07.16.2014 , Posted by
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Every year travelers around the world take stunning photographs documenting their journey, capturing many beautiful locations, both urban and natural. National Geographic’s Travel Photo Contest is for anyone who wants to submit their favorite photos in four different categories: Spontaneous Moments, Travel Portraits, Outdoor Scenes and Sense of Place. This year, thousands of entries were submitted, and later this month finalists and winners will be announced. Here are 12 of our favorite images to get a taste of the incredible assortment of moments being captured. [Read more...]

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There’s Something In The Water At This Abandoned Shopping Mall…

Wednesday 07.02.2014 , Posted by
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Years ago, this Bangkok shopping mall tanked – and now, it’s playing koi. With help from an open-air roof, torrential rain, and an anonymous fish breeder,  the abandoned New World shopping mall has slowly been transforming into the most unexpected aquarium since the early 2000s.  [Read more...]

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This Underground Trampoline is Totally Nuts (and 180 Feet High)

Thursday 06.26.2014 , Posted by
Underground Cave Trampoline Wales 1

There aren’t many activities that can combine the fear of being underground with staggering heights… but this new attraction in Wales has done it. The new Bounce Below arena (near tongue twisting Blaenau Ffestiniog) will soon be giving visitors the chance to bounce and slide on an immense underground trampoline suspended 180 feet up in an underground cavern that’s twice the size of London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral. [Read more...]

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The International Buffalo Bodypainting Festival in China

Tuesday 06.24.2014 , Posted by
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Later this week, the World Bodypainting Festival begins in Austria, but last month a similar competition took place in the southern hills of China: Buffalo Painting. Located in Jiangcheng county, the annual International Buffalo Bodypainting competition coincides with the region’s founding. This year marked the 60th anniversary for Jiangcheng, and a total of 48 water buffaloes got “dressed” for the occasion. [Read more...]

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A Hand-Built “Inner Space” Vehicle Explores Mexico’s Abandoned Railway Lines

Friday 06.20.2014 , Posted by
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In 1995, nearly 9,000 km of railway line in Mexico and Ecuador was abandoned due to low profits. The once promising route, which could have meant reliable trans-continental travel, was left to decay as a modern ruin. It was years later when Mexican artists and brothers Ivan Puig and Andrés Padilla Domene had a novel idea – to build a modern “inner space” vehicle to explore the old route through the heart of their country. The project turned into the strange silver rail and road vehicle you see here: SEFT-1. [Read more...]

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Summer Camp for Adults: Unplug and Be a Kid Again at Camp Grounded

Thursday 06.19.2014 , Posted by
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How many hours per day do you spend staring at a screen? How many times do you scroll your Facebook feed? How many buzzing notifications on your phone interrupt your life? If you’re like most people, whatever number answers you responded with might be overwhelming. How did we become so reliant on technology and is it really making us more connected? Many of us could use a digital detox- and Camp Grounded is just the place to begin. In the beautiful California Redwoods, 200+ adults gather to disconnect from all devices including clocks, leave their identities, work talk and networking behind, and work on authentic connection- like they did as children. With healthy communal meals, yoga, games, creative workshops, stargazing, talent shows and more, to help adults remember what came so naturally to them as children. [Read more...]

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Car Camping Revolutionized: This Bed Folds Into a Suitcase

Thursday 06.19.2014 , Posted by
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If you’ve ever tried camping in your car, you probably found yourself getting less than perfect sleep. Between curling up into the majorly lumpy back seat, or reclining the front seats for an equally lumpy/bumpy experience (one that makes side/stomach sleeping impossible), the options aren’t that inviting. Enter the SwissRoomBox – an ingenious invention that will convert even tiny hatchbacks into a flat sleeping area. And yes, like the Swiss Army knife it claims as a namesake, this smart system folds up into a small package – a rolling suitcase. [Read more...]

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This Russian Salt Mine is a Strange Psychedelic Wonderland

Monday 06.16.2014 , Posted by
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Near the Russian city of Yekaterinburg, more than 650 feet below the surface, is a salt mine straight out of a psychedelic drug trip. The walls, ceilings and floors are covered with colorful swirls of reds, yellows, golds and even blues caused by natural layers of mineral carnallite – a source of magnesium, and mainly used in the manufacturing of fertilizers. Here the hidden minerals have been revealed as excavating tools created subterranean tubular labyrinths that stretch for miles. Most of the mine is abandoned now (requiring special permission to enter) but photographer Mikhail Mishainik made his way underground to capture the eerie place for all to see. [Read more...]

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Detroit’s Rapid Decline Captured in Past Google Street Views

Monday 06.16.2014 , Posted by
Detroit Google Street View header

Once famous as the prosperous hub of automobile manufacturing in the US, Detroit is now far better known for its precipitous fall into dilapidated ruin. Nothing makes that more apparent than a look back through Googles recently released Street View “time machine” feature. Here we can cruise the streets of Motor City in years past, marveling at how alarmingly quick the city has crumbled. [Read more...]

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